Meet the NZRA Exec

Dr Rachelle Martin - NZRA President

My rehabilitation-related role:  I work as a lecturer at the Rehabilitation Teaching and Research Unit (RTRU) at the University of Otago Wellington, and as an independent disability and rehabilitation researcher. 

Why rehabilitation is so important: I am committed to actively developing opportunities and environments that allow people and whānau to live well and flourish after injury or when living with long-term health conditions. Therefore, an important component of rehabilitation for me is advocating for enabling societies, full and meaningful participation for all, and research that is prioritised by the people most impacted by its’ findings!

A good day looks like.... A few hours reading my book in bed, a few hours playing in the garden, a few hours riding my e-Bike in the Port Hills, eating some good food with good friends, listening to an ‘Off Menu’ podcast episode, and (currently) catching up with my children living in other time-zones!

Anne Hawker - NZRA Secretary

My rehabilitation-related role: I am facilitator of the Disabled Older Peoples Group and member of Whaikaha's Strategic Advisory Group. 

Why rehabilitation is so important: It provides opportunities for disabled people to live their best life in an environment that is inclusive and fully accessible.                                                

A good day looks like... Catching up with friends, having a good discussion about what we can do to make a difference, cooking a meal for good friends and family, and having time to garden. Catching up with my  children by Zoom.

Jono Boyce - NZRA Treasurer

My rehabilitation-related role:  I am a Partner at Nexia New Zealand, based in Christchurch, and have joined the NZRA Executive as Treasurer. 

Why rehabilitation is so important: While I'm not working within the rehabilitation space, I believe rehabilitation is important because it can assist with restoring quality of life, helping individuals recover and regain autonomy and their self-confidence after illness or injury.

A good day looks like... An early start with my young kids (1 and 3) and some fresh air outside, perhaps a visit to the Christchurch Farmers Market which is on our doorstep, a run or bike ride and a family movie night followed by a book in bed.

Dr Leanne Parker

What is your rehabilitation-related role: I work in the community as a Rehabilitation Physician clinically presently (and have done so for about the last 15 years), largely in  Christchurch. 

Why do you think rehabilitation is so important: People - those with long-term health conditions can benefit from external input via rehabilitation services thus I feel rehabilitation is important as it can add value to people and their lives - and I can add to that positively. 

What does a good day look life for you? Definitely starting with coffee. At some point some exercise is great - a walk or surf, or hit of tennis. Sometimes I may attend the gym for a class. I also value catching up with friends when I can. I enjoy spending time with my family and though relaxing times are often in the weekends now (we have two teenagers) this is awesome too. 

Dr Stephanie Thompson

My rehabilitation-related role:  I work at Te Whatu Ora as an Allied Health Consultant for rehabilitation.  As part of that role, I work clinically as a physiotherapist in an early supported discharge team.

Why rehabilitation is so important: For me, rehabilitation needs to be considered an essential part of healthcare, as it can support and enable people to live a full and meaningful life in the context of illness or injury.  

A good day looks like... A long trail run around the hills of Wellington, hanging out with family and friends, drinking good coffee and an afternoon nap.

Gretchen Seemann

What is your rehabilitation-related role: I work as an Occupational Therapist working in community rehabilitation for adults

Why do you think rehabilitation is so important: I thoroughly enjoy helping people achieve their goals, completing activities and participating in life, their way after illness and/or injury. I think it is a privilege to be part of that journey and feel that sometimes the value of rehabilitation is under estimated. For this reason, I feel passionate about advocating and growing rehabilitation.

What does a good day look life for you? A real coffee out in the sun for some calm, warm time out is a blissful way to start the day. Other things that make a good day for me are hearing from my adult children, going through recipe books to choose a meal to share in the evening. Fresh ingredients, good company, shared food, brings us all together. Love that feeling!   

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